Texas/United States – -(AmmoLand.com)- Former Representative Beto O’Rourke got a lot of media coverage for his close race against Senator Ted Cruz in 2018. Now, he is trying to turn that near-win into a nomination for President of the United States. Second Amendment supporters should be very grateful he does not seem to be having much luck in his quest.
Let’s start with the obvious: On the Second Amendment, Donald Trump has done quite well. We can complain about the administrative bump stock ban, but that pales in comparison to a lengthy list of pro-Second Amendment judges on the court. Right now, barring a packed court, Heller is safe, and the potential is there to build on that ruling, especially if Trump wins re-election and a pro-Second Amendment president succeeds him.
Now, let’s take a look at the track record of Beto O’Rourke. He served three terms in the House of Representatives from 2013-2019. Just his record from those three terms should be enough for any Second Amendment supporter, even those upset over bump stocks, to rule him out as an alternative to Trump.
For starters, let’s look at his votes. In 2014, he voted to allow the District of Columbia to enforce even more draconian restrictions on law-abiding gun owners than had been in place. Keep in mind, according to an NRA-ILA summary, Washington D.C.’s laws are among the strictest in the country. Yet, when you look at crime stats, D.C.’s are pretty high, if not on the level of Chicago or Baltimore.
O’Rourke also voted to continue arbitrary additions to the NICS prohibited persons list from both the Social Security Administration and the Department of Veterans Affairs. He did provide a lengthy explanation for his vote on the Veterans Second Amendment Protection Act, but when you look at the issue, he gets it wrong. Our rights, which are given to us by our Creator, should not be taken from us just on the say-so of an unelected, unaccountable bureaucrat. Yet O’Rourke was willing to defend that happening.
In that respect, his opposition to the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act in 2017 was also not surprising. In this case, he simply saw no reason to deal with the fact that crossing state lines means that the right to self-protection is infringed, for no good reason. Even driver’s licenses are good in all 50 states and D.C. – so why not concealed carry permits?
O’Rourke even refused to support legislation to help sportsmen, voting against the Sportsman’s Heritage and Recreational Enhancement Act in 2016. While we often focus on gun bans, self-defense, and similar legislation, the fact is, many people exercise their Second Amendment rights to put food on the table or for just target shooting. The Interior Department noted in 2017 that there were 11.5 million hunters and 32.4 million target shooters. The NRA has about 6 million members. If we could add half of the hunters and target shooters to the NRA – an additional 21.65 million potential voters, it would be an unstoppable juggernaut, and our rights would be far safer than they are now. A lot of the time, the simple fact is that size matters. If politicians knew they were offending nearly 28 million voters, they would be far more respectful of our rights than just the six million in the present NRA.
O’Rourke has gone to a greater anti-Second Amendment extreme in his presidential campaign. He sent tweets supporting outlining an aggressive anti-Second Amendment agenda and targeting the NRA over universal background checks. Yet he somehow got a 50 percent rating from GOA in 2018, 30 points higher than that group gave Steve Scalise, a stalwart supporter of our right to keep and bear arms.
The good news is O’Rourke’s candidacy seems to be foundering. There are other anti-Second Amendment extremists pushing positions that are even more extreme than his, and he has also made some mistakes. This may be a blessing, as he gave Ted Cruz a close run, and arguably helped tilt House races against pro-Second Amendment candidates in 2018. It doesn’t take a genius to see that Beto O’Rourke is NOT good for gun rights.
About Harold Hutchison
Writer Harold Hutchison has more than a dozen years of experience covering military affairs, international events, U.S. politics and Second Amendment issues. Harold was consulting senior editor at Soldier of Fortune magazine and is the author of the novel Strike Group Reagan. He has also written for the Daily Caller, National Review, Patriot Post, Strategypage.com, and other national websites.